Knowing The Signs of Lung Cancer Might Save Your Life
The single most common form of cancer for men is lung cancer. For women, it's in the top three. Both your chances of survival and quality of life are highly improved by detecting the cancer early, when treatment is simpler. Here are ten potential warning signs you need to watch out for.
#1 - A Cough that Won't Quit
A simple cough from time to time is nothing to worry about. Everyone has them, from colds or respiratory infections and the like. When a cough lingers and lingers, however, lasting for weeks without improving, it could mean something is wrong with your respiratory track.
#2 - A Sudden Change in Your Cough
If your persistent cough suddenly undergoes a significant change--becoming more frequent, perhaps, or becoming deeper and hoarser than normal, or producing blood and extra mucus--this is a bad sign. You should go see a doctor as quickly as possible.
#3 - Changes in Breathing
A tumor in your lungs can actually constrict, or even fully block, your airway. That would obviously lead to you having trouble breathing, getting winded far more easily than you are now. If once-easy tasks are now tiring you out quickly, you should probably talk to a doctor.
#4 - Chest Pain
Chest pain can be a sign of lung cancer. Lung cancer enlarges your lymph nodes, which can press against nerves in your trunk. It can also metastasis to your chest wall or ribs, causing pain. Any unexplained pain is bad, and you should consult a physician.
#5 - Wheezing
When your airway is constricted, or your respiratory track inflamed, it can bring with it whistling and wheezing when trying to breathe. While this could just be an allergy or asthma, it could also be the sign of a tumor interfering with your regular breathing.
#6 - Hoarse Voice
Lung cancer can even alter your voice. By constricting your airway, or even affecting the nerves of your voice box, your voice could become deeper, raspier or hoarser than normal. If your voice undergoes a change and stays that way for weeks, it could be the first signs of something serious.
#7 - Unexplained Weight Loss
Any sort of cancer can bring sudden, unexplained weight loss. Cancer cells fight with your body's healthy cells, competing for energy and nutrients. That causes your body to burn extra calories to keep everything working, resulting in rapid weight loss.
#8 - Bone Pain
As lung cancer grows and becomes more advanced, it can spread to other parts of your body, including your back, shoulders and arms. New pains could just be a sign of getting older, but unexplained new pains can and should cause worry. Talking to a doctor is advised.
#9 - Headache
How can a tumor in your lungs cause a headache? Well, your lungs are close to your superior vena cava, which is the vein that brings blood from your upper body back to your heart. If a tumor presses on it and restricts it, that can cause headaches.
#10 - Unfortunately, Nothing
There isn't any symptom which is undeniably and obviously a sign of lung cancer. That's why 40% of patients are diagnose in later, more advanced stages--there's no symptom that definitely means you should get checked out. That's why you should talk to your doctor regularly about any unusual occurrences; being part of that 60% that gets diagnosed early can drastically improve your overall prognosis.